I had an interview with my friend J. Scott Coatsworth. You have until January 5th to enter my giveaway for two ebooks of Together.
I had an interview with my friend J. Scott Coatsworth. You have until January 5th to enter my giveaway for two ebooks of Together.
Moonbeams over Atlanta welcomes guest Beany Sparks for insight on and review of her book Pib’s Dragon published by Rainbow Ninja Press with general release today.
Hi Eloreen *waves*
Thanks for having me 🙂
Okay so I’m here for a quick chat about Pib’s Dragon!
The book is the first in a multi-author series called Twisted Fairy Tales. Authors will be taking some well-known (and some not so well-known) fairy tales and twisting them together.
Pib’s Dragon was supposed to be my only contribution to the series but as I was writing it, a couple of other characters started jumping up and down wanting their story. So there will be a sequel, tentatively titled Del’s Wolf, which I’m hoping to get started on this weekend. I have an idea of what I’m going to do with it so now all I need to do is sit down and write (not always easy to do though). But I’m looking forward to spending some more time with my cheeky serval and his dragon mate because they will definitely be around in the sequel.
After Del’s Wolf is done, I’ll be going back to Arcane Magic. Book 2 was started before Pib pushed his way to the front so I need to finish that one. I might go straight on to Book 3 but we’ll see. PITA (my muse) has a way of helping other characters push their way to the front and demand attention *glares at muse*
Eloreen: How did the idea of the Twisted Fairy Tales get started?
Um, it was a while ago that the series came to mind. It’s been so long that the idea came to me that I can’t even remember what sparked the idea. I do remember talking to Ellen (Cross) at the time and whatever we were talking about had my mind spinning with ideas.
Eloreen: Who inspired you to write?
I always let my mind wander and came up with stories to amuse myself when I was driving or at work but it wasn’t until a couple of friends encouraged me to try that I decided to give it a go. Once PITA was let out, I had no way of getting him back in his box.
Eloreen: Who designed the cover for Pib’s Dragon?
Um, I did. I got to a point in the story where Arty (my artistic muse) demanded a cover for the story so I had to stop writing and get a cover done before I could continue. Once I had the background for the cover, I had to come up with a title. Pib’s Dragon was initially just a temporary title, but then it fit the story so I kept it. It also made it easier to pick the title for the sequel.
Eloreen: Do you write to an outline or off the cuff (a pantster)?
I’m a total pantser! I’ve tried to plot out the stories but every time I did, PITA would take the story in a completely different direction so I gave up. I might have a basic idea or plan, but nothing else. I also find that sometime as the story progresses, my initial idea doesn’t fit the story. The initial idea I had for Pib’s Dragon was a bit different to how it actually ended up but I’m happy with the end result. Del’s Wolf has a number of things that I need to make sure get resolved, and I’ve got an idea of how the story will go, but there are a lot of unplanned sections. I can’t wait to see what happens!
Eloreen: Thank you Beany. 🙂 I love the cover, btw. Continue on for the review of this great story. I can’t wait for Del’s Wolf. 😉
A dragon is about to find out what happens when a cat discovers his cave of shiny treasures.
After nine years, Pib is finally free from his contract with the newly wed prince. Slipping out in the middle of the night to avoid getting stuck in another contract, Pib shifts into his cat and makes his way home to the little village he foolishly left, hoping his best friend Wil still lives there.
Dray is bored. His services as a princess-guarding dragon are no longer needed and even his gold and jewels are unable to cheer him up. His mood changes quickly when he catches someone in his treasure cave, and it starts a series of events that change his life forever.
When the two finally meet, sparks fly, but Dray will have to move quickly if he’s to save his cat after Pib gets kidnapped.
Pib snuck into the darkened room, tiptoeing quietly so as not to wake the newly crowned prince Geraint and his princess. Looking around, he both thanked and cursed his shifter senses. While he was grateful he could see inside the room, the smell of sex throughout the air was something he could have done without.
Reaching the desk on the far side of the room, he paused and glanced at the couple. Once he was satisfied they were still asleep, he eased open the cover and found what he was after—his freedom. After nine long years as the bastard’s slave, the letter freeing him from servitude almost brought tears to his eyes. Carefully folding it and placing it in his inside pocket, Pib gently shut the desk and tiptoed back toward the bedroom door, leaving the room as silently as he’d entered.
He knew there was only a limited window of opportunity for him to make his escape. Even though the pompous bastard had made a production of signing the form and granting him his freedom, Pib knew it was all for show. If he didn’t escape now, Geraint would get him alone and force him to sign another contract and then make some sort of bogus announcement about how Pib wanted to stay.
Pib snorted, unable to help himself. Luckily there was no one else around the castle at this time of the night, though even if there was, Pib didn’t care. He was leaving, and no one was going to stop him. Anyone who tried would have a close encounter with his knife, or his claws, he wasn’t picky.
“Hey, Pib, where are you off to in the middle of the night?” asked the guard at the front door of the castle. Pib never bothered learning their names or getting friendly with them, especially since Geraint could force him to kill any of them at a moment’s notice. He’d learned that it didn’t pay for him to form any attachments with those surrounding Geraint.
“Getting an early start on my retirement,” Pib replied, smirking at the man while he continued to stroll toward the exit.
“Sorry, Pib, but I have to check. Do you have a signed letter from Prince Geraint?” The guard shifted from foot to foot, showing his unease.
Pib stopped in front of him and forced a smile. “Of course,” he said, carefully extracting the letter and handing it over to the guard.
He waited, watching the guard closely as he read the letter. One wrong move and Pib was going to gut him. Nothing could happen to that letter.
“Looks good,” the guard said, handing the letter back to Pib. “It’ll sure be different without you around, but all the best. And, uh, don’t take this the wrong way, but I hope I don’t see you again.”
Returning the letter to his pocket, Pib looked up and smiled a real smile at the man. He wanted to laugh when the guard’s face paled as he caught sight of Pib’s canines, but restrained himself. “Don’t worry, I hope never to see you again either.”
With that, Pib walked out of the castle and made his way through the sleeping village. Pulling his hood up, he used the dark material to blend into the surroundings. He wasn’t taking any chances that Geraint wouldn’t wake up any moment and send guards running after him. After all, Pib was practically friends with all of the skeletons in Geraint’s closet.
Pib reached the edge of the village and paused. After nine long years, he was finally free of Geraint, his orders, and most importantly, his shackle. The magical cuff that had decorated his right ankle for nine years had been removed after Geraint had signed his release. The cuff was the only thing ensuring Pib’s obedience, and finally, it was gone.
Taking a deep breath, Pib stepped over the invisible boundary line and felt the remaining enchantments shatter and disappear, leaving him standing as his true self for the first time in years. Reaching inside, he called out his inner cat to come out and play, and in seconds, his clothes disappeared and he was standing on all fours in his serval form. Stretching, he threw one last glance back at the castle and the village before slinking away into the trees, using the natural camouflage to shield him as he made his way toward the start of his new life.
Rainbow Nina Press provided the story to me for an honest review. I read the blurb above and was intrigued by a story about a dragon and a cat meeting and getting to know each other.
While this is the start of a new series, this title can be read as a standalone. This is a fun story full of action, humor, a little mystery, and fun interactions between Pib, the serval, and Dray, the dragon. There are plot abound, twists and turn, that made it interesting and fun to read. The secondary characters are fleshed out and stand on their own. I’m glad that Del will get his own story. 😉 While there is not a lot of sex scenes, the story line more than makes up for it and you just want to go “Awwww” several times. I had to finish it once I started. Luckily, I read fast. 🙂 I definitely will like to see what the other authors will do with this series.
With this, I give Pib’s Dragon 5 stars.
Beany lives in Western Australia. She first started reading romance novels in 2008, but it wasn’t until January 2010 when her Kindle got delivered that the world of erotic romance opened its doors to her, and she hasn’t looked back. With suggestions and support from friends, her muse—”affectionately” known as PITA—was finally able to break free, and in January 2014 her first story was written. Since she can’t put PITA back in his box, Beany has decided to give in and team up with him.
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Today Moonbeams over Atlanta is very lucky to be interviewing Lilah Suzanne author of Broken Records. In addition, there is a review of the book and a contest at the end of the post.
Hi Lilah, thank you for agreeing to this interview. Write something from your character’s point of view as a child. (Holiday, first kiss, anything.)
On Sunday mornings the barbershop opens later, that way Nico’s dad can check the equipment and order more shampoo and pomade and talc and THOSE little paper cups for coffee, the sandalwood scented shave cream that lingers on his hands, and the barbicide that spills on Nico’s shirt when he drops the scissors and combs into the jars of disinfectant too hard sometimes.
So Sunday mornings mean shopping with Mom. And Lucas.
Who stands in front of the automatic doors with his hand held up flat, as if he’s using The Force to open them. But Nico knows they’re motion sensitive and it has nothing to do with Star Wars. And yet somehow Lucas is the one who gets straight A’s.
Mom hands them each a list of produce items. His has:
Sugar Snap Peas
Red Bell Pepper (two)
Lucas darts off right away, shoving past Nico to get a head start. Lucas’ left shoe is untied and his pants are three inches too short, his T-shirt has a hole in the seam of one sleeve and is for a TV show called Earthworm Jim that isn’t even on TV anymore. Nico glares at him, then moves on to his list.
Sugar Snap Peas is easy. Nico picks crunchy pea pods without any brown spots or broken tops. Makes sure they’re firm and bright green. He gets a plastic bag and uses the tongs to carefully scoop in just enough for four servings.
The Red Bell Pepper (two) is next in the produce section, stuck in with the vegetables even though Nico learned ages ago that bell peppers aren’t vegetables because they have seeds. Like kindergarten ages ago. He finds two bright crisp no mushy-spot peppers. He notices they match his shirt: long-sleeve button down, red. Suspenders, red and black striped. Black pants. He’s also wearing the black and white saddle shoes he requested for his tenth birthday that are still in tiptop shape four months later, even though Mom thought they were too fancy for a boy who plays baseball in the mud sometimes.
As if he would wear saddle shoes to play baseball.
Lucas finishes first, because he picks the very first fruits and vegetables he can get his hands on. Lucas’ list:
Apples (he gets baking apples even though the apples are to be packed for school lunches and not baked into pies. Three of them. Why three? Who knows.)
Spinach (loose) (he gets mixed greens with spinach. Prewashed. Not the same thing. Sigh.)
Bananas (some of them have spots already. They’ll go bad too fast and his mom will make banana bread with walnuts with them. Yuck.)
Sunday morning grocery store visits with Mom means Lucas will brag about winning the grocery-treasure-hunt contest and mom will say, boys! Enough. It doesn’t matter who wins.
But it’s fine, because Nico knows who really won. And it’s the guy who would never choose a mushy brown spotted honey dew melon which is not “basically a cantaloupe,” Lucas, because some people have taste and standards.
It’s him. The real winner. Nico. Just to be clear. Lucas does The Force again on the way out. Nico rolls his eyes. Sigh.
First, I have to say that I like it. I liked it a lot. I’m always a sucker for music stars and Grady Dawson is no exception, even though he’s into country music. Not a large fan of country music, but I do enjoy some artists so it was somewhat believable to me. We meet Nico Takahashi after having a very trying day with a diva starlet and all he wants to do is get away from it all. He “meets” Grady with a magazine photo shoot that provides some eye candy but he doesn’t read the article that goes along with it. He immediately meets Grady not too long after and commences the journey of Nico fighting his attraction to Grady because he thinks he’s a player, while Grady pursues because he thinks Nico is the one he’s looking for. A series of mis-information ensues, hot sex, and journeys from California to Tennessee and back again.
It has a great flow of words. I’m only a little leary of Nico’s almost whining in the beginning about his lot in life, but for the most part it wasn’t terrible. He did grow on you and does realize his love for Grady. Grady stayed mostly constant as his personality and desires were revealed throughout the story. Both have great depth and made them seem real. It does have a happy ending, and I enjoyed it.
With this, I give Broken Records 4 out of 5 stars.
Author Name: Lilah Suzanne
Book Name: Broken Records
Series: Spotlight, Book One
Release Date: December 17, 2015
Pages or Words: 280 pages
Categories: Bisexual, Contemporary, Fiction, Gay Fiction, M/M Romance, Romance
Publisher: Interlude Press
Cover Artist: Victoria S. with CB Messer
Los Angeles-based stylist Nico Takahashi loves his job—or at least, he used to. Feeling fed up and exhausted from the cutthroat, gossip-fueled business of Hollywood, Nico daydreams about packing it all in and leaving for good. So when Grady Dawson—sexy country music star and rumored playboy—asks Nico to style him, Nico is reluctant. But after styling a career-changing photo-shoot, Nico follows Grady to Nashville where he finds it increasingly difficult to resist Grady’s charms. Can Nico make peace with show business and all its trappings, or will Grady’s public persona get in the way of their private attraction to each other?
Katya Romanova gave up everything to work at the one-of-a-kind Steampunk Carnival – her family, her home, her reputation. She wouldn’t want to be anywhere else.As a guide to the guests, Katya enjoys more freedom than most. She makes time to gossip with her best friend, Magdalene.
She basks in the elaborate costumes that bring her awed attention, hoping they might also win her a husband. And no man pays her more attention than her boss and carnival owner, William Warden.
But in the summer of 1887, death threats against Mr. Warden break the spell. Katya knows he might be as underhanded as he is charming, but who would
actually want him dead?
When Katya finds unexpected evidence about the carnival’s true origins, the stakes jump even higher.
Not sure whom they can trust, Katya and Magdalene work to unravel the carnival’s mysteries. Who really invented the innovative rides?
Is Mr. Warden protecting his employees or only himself from the looming violence? And will Katya cling to the better side of his nature or eventually turn her affections for him into a powerful rivalry?
Cassandra grew up in the small town of La Porte, Indiana, exploring wooded parks and sparkling lakes. Making South Bend her home, the scenery hasn’t changed much – inspiring trees and a long, winding river. From the time she started writing in second grade up to the projects she works on now, the nature, history, and people around her inspire the stories she tells. You can find her work listed under many different genres, but the heart of each story remains the same. What keeps us together, and what pulls us apart? She lives with her writer husband and their moody cat, Gaia, in a house three sizes too big. She holds a Bachelor’s in Liberal Studies and a Master’s in English. When she’s not writing, you can find her sewing, enjoying nature, listening to music, researching family history, and watching TV.
With a gentle lurch, the car rose into the air. Katya grabbed hold of the partitions between the seats, her knuckles bumping the hand of the guest on her left, who had also grabbed for it. Maddox did not reach for a stronghold. His mouth twisted in amusement, watching Katya seek security as everything that held her ascended ten, twenty, thirty feet.
The climb proved gradual and effortless. Once Katya began to relax, she realized how far she could see. The lamplights of the carnival looked beautiful and elegant below them. The slight flickering of the burning gas gleamed off the metal structures throughout the carnival. It lost itself in the velvet of patron jackets and glimmered off their silks. It flashed across buckles on top hats and shoes. It lit up gold and silver jewelry.
Katya could barely breathe. She almost forgot how nervous she had been moments before. The car reached the top of the tower and stopped there, offering its occupants a rare view at the world around them. Katya stared down at the carnival, trying to pick out the details of the band playing in the center of it all. The massive Beast behind it still intimidated, but from this height, Katya marveled in the majesty of its design.
The car shuddered and lowered itself, detaching from its part of the sky. The other occupants chattered to each other excitedly, but Katya could barely form thoughts in her head.
“What do you think?” Maddox asked her.
Katya recited the first thing that came to mind. “The ride lasts for three cycles.” She admonished herself for relying on the only words she knew about the carnival and gave in to sharing Maddox’s enthusiasm. “It’s thrilling.”
The car paused briefly at the bottom before lifting again. Each time it rose, Katya focused on a different part of the carnival. She looked across to the other side, where the Kaleidoscope competed against the game stalls and the Cannon for popularity. It really did shift like a kaleidoscope from this height, the colors of the booths smearing in her vision as they rotated. She looked past Maddox to the El and the food stall beyond it. Magdalene would be handing out cinnamon-sugar desserts and sausages on buns, but Katya was riding the carnival they had staked their lives on. She was riding the dream Brady had worked on years ago. She doubted even he had been able to enjoy it.
The car rested on the ground and stayed there. The operator made his rounds again, helping the patrons get unbuckled and return to their feet. He directed them to an exit gate in the fence. Katya and Maddox filed out with the others to the common grounds of the carnival.
“Where to next?” Maddox prompted.
Katya’s heart pounded with the possibilities. “The coaster.”
“The big one?”
“No, I don’t think I’ll ever be brave enough for that.” Katya watched the Beast’s cars roar high above them. “The smaller one here.”
Katya linked her hand around Maddox’s arm, and they walked to the nearby El. Maddox repeated Katya’s lie to the ticket taker. “Mr. Warden wants us to make sure the coaster’s operating properly.”
The man hurried them past, offering a more courteous front to the waiting customers. “You’ll all have a turn, I assure you. Just a routine inspection.”
Another operator stood a few feet inside the fence, and he motioned for Katya and Maddox to stop where they were. They watched the coaster cars slide and weave their way along the track. A minute later, they slowed into loading position on the platform. The operator stepped over to help the guests out, and once they left the platform, his flexing fingers invited Katya and Maddox toward him. He buckled them into the front seat of the first car.
“Are you nervous now?” Maddox whispered into Katya’s ear.
Katya nodded, but she felt the rush of anticipation filling her chest. “It’s not too fast, is it?”
“You should know.”
“I don’t know. I can’t think of anything except how fun this is.”
The operator filled the remaining seats in the connected cars. With a signal to the ticket taker and the man Katya could not see who ran the switches, the cars jerked forward. This time, Katya and Maddox both reached for the metal grab bar in front of them. A mechanism in the track pulled the train of cars up the initial slope. The passengers behind Katya and Maddox murmured with apprehension and breathed audibly, awaiting the first of many drops.
The train rose steadily, taking its passengers up to a short plateau. Within seconds, the cars slid down, lifting Katya’s stomach into the top of her chest. She let out a shriek amidst the screams and shouts behind her. The train twisted to the left, curving to parallel the outer fence of the carnival. It rose a short distance and fell again, racing its passengers lower toward the ground. A second mechanism pulled the cars even higher than before.
In one graceful motion, the cars slipped down the next slope of track, curving away from the back of the grounds. They dipped down beside the side stage, where Katya could not tell what contest was taking place. The cars sped along, turning left only to bend back to the right. The track led them down beneath the iron structure and returned them safely to the platform.
Katya barely had time to catch her breath before the ride operator unbuckled her belt. She walked with Maddox to the exit gate, where a small wooden sign bore the words Thank You in painted, curling letters.
Copyright © Cassandra Leuthold
I’ve gotten great support from a lot of people that keeps me going when the work gets tough. One of the best things a reader told me recently was in a voice mail my mother-in-law left me when she finished my novel, XZA. She said it was awesome and now that she knew the ending, she wanted to reread the whole book to enjoy it even more. That’s a high compliment, creating a book readers want to revisit instead of always reaching for a new story. There are so many great stories out there.
I work from home for my day job, so I already have a home office set up where I can type for eight hours a day. I have to be comfortable without too many distractions in order to write, and I like knowing I already have everything I might need at hand – pens, paper, my desk planner, a glass of water, my phone, and some lip balm. I used to be more fluid about where I wrote, and I’ve written in some unexpected places – during class, while sitting waiting for an appointment, bored at a restaurant, watching TV. Most of my writing is computer-based now unless I get an idea I have to write down.
I wrote and published for an entire year based only on belief. Belief in myself. Belief it would be worth it. Belief readers would find and enjoy my books. It was a tough year as I learned the new landscape of publishing. I have a beautiful deck of cards with a different word and picture on each of them, and I stood the card for Believe where I could see it every day. I made sure I looked at it, especially when I didn’t believe what I was doing would make a difference. When I finally felt ready to move on to a new word, I realized it’d been a year since I started. I knew then – and I feel now – I never could’ve willingly gone a whole year on belief if I’d known how long it would be ahead of time. Focusing on what I was doing and the results I wanted pulled me through it. I learned a lot about myself, and even though I still have lessons to learn about life and publishing, I’m much more confident today than I was then.
The first chapter of Steampunk Carnival is different than the rest of the book. It’s narrated by someone whose name isn’t revealed for several chapters. The reason he’s obsessed with filling a journal with his ideas isn’t clear until we find out who he is, but the song gives insight into his situation. He’s a man driven by longing, loneliness, and desperation. It adds extra layers and emotions to what’s shared at that point in the book.
I’m a big fan of the movie “Moulin Rouge.” In the director’s commentary, Baz Luhrmann talks about the interesting difference between points of view in the climactic scene when Satine dies after the big, pulse-pounding performance. The audience applauds. They loved what they saw. But what they missed was a murder attempt, and what they can’t see after the curtain closes is Satine’s heartbreaking death. This song represents that for Steampunk Carnival. All the guests see are beautiful costumes, spectacular rides, fun games, and delicious treats. They don’t know about the death threats, the violence, and the arguments. They never find out the games are rigged.
As the story unwinds, Katya finds herself in deeper and deeper trouble. She acquires more to lose – friends, her safety, a boyfriend – and realizes there are fewer things she can be sure of. A lot she took for granted isn’t true. This song expresses Katya’s confusion and caution. She doesn’t know how much to trust her boss, William Warden. She hopes everything will work out all right, but she knows any ending is possible.
This song reminds me of Maddox’s approach to Katya in a tongue-in-cheek kind of way. If Maddox has one thing going for him, it’s persistence. He tries several different tricks to get Katya to go out with him, and she turns him down several times. She’s not easily persuaded to trade her love of money for appreciation of simple fun.
This song provides the perfect backdrop to the night Katya finally gives in to spending time with Maddox. She leaves her fear, her distrust, and her rigid ideas about dating behind. Katya and Maddox ride three attractions at the carnival, which thrills Katya more than she anticipated. But more importantly, they’re finally able to share more about themselves and build a solid foundation for their relationship.
The lyrics and driving guitar in this song mirror what Katya and her friends are feeling by the time they confront the forces conspiring against them. Katya has seen William Warden’s inner nature, and she doesn’t like it. His security guards, allegedly hired to keep the employees safe, have been watching Magdalene like a hawk for weeks. Katya’s tired of meeting in secret, worrying about how the carnival’s reputation will survive the truth about its origins. But true to the song, with going to battle against powerful rivals comes a new beginning for all of them.
High school football star Guillermo Garcia can count himself among the popular kids—for now. Although he secretly dates Evan Granger, who is openly gay and badly bullied for it, Guillermo doesn’t dare let his teammates, classmates, or close-knit family learn about his sexuality.
But Guillermo witnessed an attack on Evan, and now the school bullies plan to out Guillermo in retaliation. In their small town, word spreads rapidly, so Guillermo must make a quick choice—come out now on his own or risk having someone else do it for him.
Contemporary LGBT Fiction, Published by Harmony Ink, an imprint of Dreamspinner Press
1) What do you do to celebrate a new book contract?
A fist pump in the air, followed by telling whoever in my household will listen that I have a new contract.
2) What is your zodiac sign? Do you feel it is an accurate description of you?
Cancer, and yes.
3) What is your favorite season? Why?
Spring. New beginnings, more daylight hours, and the weather gets warmer without being unbearable.
4) What is your favorite part about writing (drafting, editing, plotting, promoting, etc)?
Writing the first draft, because even though I brainstorm before I start, I don’t always know how the characters are going to get where I think they’re going, and sometimes they don’t end up there anyway.
5) Any addictions (chocolate, coffee, tv shows, collectibles, shoes, etc.)?
Does writing count?
6) Favorite type of food?
I can’t decide between pepperoni pizza and scallion pancake.
This blog tour is sponsored and run by Muse Charmer PR, providing superhero promotion for your book. Learn more and check out all the tour stops by visiting http://www.promoyourmuse.com
1. How did you get the idea for this book?
This book was actually written a long time ago, and then unearthed and polished (quite a bit). However, I wanted to play with the science fiction trope of being abducted by aliens. Instead of the “grey men” doing experiments, I wanted something different. What if the abduction led to a hunky man and a new life?
2. Why do you write science fiction?
I write science fiction because I love the unknown and the possibility of what might be out there. I’m fascinated by space (and weather, among other scientific things), and the belief that we might not be alone.
3. Why should readers pick up this story?
It’s fun. While there are some issues, such as the loss of a friend and starting over, to be dealt with, most of all I wanted Abducted to be a great escape.
4. Who is your favorite science fiction author?
I can’t really count a single favorite. I love David Weber, Elizabeth Moon, Tanya Huff, and Anne McCaffrey.
5. What is your favorite thing about outer space?
I love the stars. I love looking up and seeing all these constellations (man-made) and knowing that they are comprised of stars so vast and distant from each other that it takes hundreds or thousands of years for their light to reach us. We really are looking at a snapshot of history when we look at the night sky.
Getting abducted by a hunky android wasn’t on Jacey’s list of things to do to try and reclaim her life after the death of her best friend and the loss of their business. But when her car crashes during a storm, she’s saved not by any rescue vehicle, but by Aiden Starsek, the Lord of BelaZed who informs her that he must have a wife or face deactivation. Jacey blames herself for her friend’s death. If she can stop another one, even if it means giving up everything she’s ever known, she will.
Aidan knows Deactivation Day nears and unless he’s able to find a human to love him he’ll die.. Unable to find love on his own planet, he discovers the beautiful Jacey on her own world, Earth. Her beauty entices him. Her compassion humbles him. And though in bed their passion is insatiable, he fears that it won’t turn to love in time to save his life. Only her love will save him, not just from Deactivation Day, but also from himself.
Erotic SF Romance, Published by Loose Id
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This blog tour is sponsored and run by Muse Charmer PR, providing superhero promotion for your book. Learn more and enter a special contest by visiting http://www.promoyourmuse.com
This is a double post with a review of A Devil’s Brew AND an interview with Rhys Ford! Pull up your comfy chair, grab your coffee (or tea), and read on…be sure to read the entire post. There’s a giveaway at the end. 🙂
First, The Review:
Rhys provided the story to me for an honest review. Thank you. I absolutely love the Sinners series and can’t wait for the next installment. 🙂
I have to say that when I finished it, I wanted it to be longer. 😉 Then it would defeat the purpose of being a novella, as Rhys so graciously pointed out to me…
We see Miki, the lead singer, and Damien, his best friend and guitarist, looking in a jewelry story for a Valentine’s Day present for Sionn, Damien’s lover. Much drama ensues while they are there and it kicks off Miki’s angst when it comes to his lover, Kane Morgan, and his feelings on Valentine’s in general, and his lover’s happiness with his own presents in specific. It it woven well, and I love how it is written. While it had been a while since I had read Whiskey and Wry, it was easy to pick up the names again without having to pull up a character chart. The secondary characters are present and makes you fell like they are primary characters. It was fun, and despite the angst, light and short to give a better understanding of Miki and his character. And the sex is hot, too. 🙂
Because of the wonderfulness that is A Devil’s Brew, I give it 5 Stars.
And now, The Interview:
Rhys contacted me after I had agreed to review A Devil’s Brew looking to grab some space to promote it’s release this month and Tequila Mockingbird next month. Be sure to come back for a guest post and review in celebration of Tequila Mockingbird‘s release at the end of June.
Please welcome Rhys Ford to Moonbeams over Atlanta!
Thank you for letting me be here.
Thank you for participating! So, please provide a summary of Rhys Ford to the readers. 😉
Ah, a summary? I was born and raised in Hawai’i and am now in San Diego. I am owned by three cats, two dogs, a few laptops and a vintage Pontiac Firebird. Oh, and I write. *grins*
What inspired you to write your first book?
I was actually twelve when I wrote my first book. I remember writing it but don’t recall what it was about. It couldn’t have been any good. Hell, I can’t even tell you the genre. It probably was pretentious and angsty. God only knows. I’ve been writing and daydreaming since as long as I could remember.
On average, how long does it take you to write a book in general and The Devil’s Brew in specific?
The Devil’s Brew is hard to judge because it started off as a short story then increased to a novella. So a couple of months. Some things come very easily and others I fight with. The one I’m writing right now is a fight.
The Devil’s Brew is between Whiskey & Wry and Tequila Mockingbird (set to release at the end of June) in the Sinners series. Do you plan on more books in the series?
There will be one more band-related book called Sloe Ride then a Miki and Kane focused book which doesn’t have a name yet. That’ll deal with Miki’s issues from his past. And probably how he’s going to deal with Brigid who really does love him—he’s just wary of parental figures in general.
I really like your covers. What is your process from concept to finished cover?
I have no process. Usually I go with my gut. Some of them I really like and others I am all…what was I thinking? It’s hard to find good stock photo because so many of the really nice guys are taken and used by so many people. I might have to stalk gyms to get pretty guys on my own. Really, that’s the hardest part of it.
How many of your Sinners characters were sparked by real-life examples?
Wow. Um… Brigid and Donal are probably amalgamation of relatives I have. There’s a lot of me in Miki. Damie—no clue. He just fit into Miki’s character so well. And well, who wouldn’t want a Morgan?
How much research did you do for the Sinners series?
Not a lot of research because most of it is emotional stuff. The murdering part is stuff I pick up over the years. Bodies are dismayingly easy to dispose of but evidence is always lingering. San Francisco’s background probably is where I spent the most research. I always want to make sure the city flows well in the stories.
Where there any things you found in research that surprised you?
Oddly enough I found out Cousin Oliver from the Brady Bunch was the bus driver in Sharknado. That surprised me a hell of a lot.
What story, or stories, are you working on at the moment?
I am currently working on Down and Dirty, a side story featuring Cole’s younger brother Ichiro and Bobby Dawson, Cole’s very badly behaved best friend. It’s a bit of a fight because I can’t kill anyone. Really, a well placed bloodbath is never to be discounted. *nods*
What is one random fact about yourself that no one knows about?
God, I think I’m pretty open about everything. One random fact? Um… I don’t like pears? Well people know about that. Wow. Huh. I’ve got nothing. No dark secrets. Or if I do, I’ve conveniently forgotten them. *grins*
Thank you for having me and I hope you enjoy the novella! I am so appreciative of everything you’ve done for me here. Thank you again!
You are very welcome, Rhys. Come back anytime.
And that concludes our interview with Rhys Ford!
Oh! I promised a giveaway. 🙂
Rhys has graciously agreed to provide one ebook copy of her backlist to one lucky commentator to this post. This does not include A Devil’s Brew. Please make sure you leave an email address so she can contact you for your choice of book and format. Giveaway ends on 5/25/2014 at 11:59 PM. I will be picking with random.org and will provide the lucky winner’s information to Rhys within 24-48 hours. I will announce it here as well.
You must be 18+ in order to participate.
Today is a first for Moonbeams over Atlanta. I had not done an interview before because it looked hard to do. Once I did some research, I had a hard time limiting the questions to just 10! I thought it especially fortuitous to help with this blog tour because the release day is my birthday. 🙂 Please give a warm welcome to Draven St. James as we talk about her upcoming release of Fused by Fire, book 3 of the Firehouse Six series, on May 20, 2014.
Tell us a little about yourself, Draven:
-I’m a born and raised Oregonian. I’ve traveled extensively in search of mischief and mayhem to fill my books. My ventures have been quite successful in inspiring a wealth of stories both sexy and humorous. It gives me a great excuse to do some crazy stuff in the name of research. Of course at the end of the day, coffee within reach, laptop at the ready is where I find my peace.
What draws you to the M/M romance genre?
-I find that I feel more of a connection to the male characters. Female characters are amazing, but they don’t inspire a love story for me.
This is book 3 in the Firehouse Six series. Does that mean that there will only be 6 books?
-Not necessarily. I haven’t decided the exact length of the series yet. However, with each book I find myself adding new characters that I fall in love with. Then of course they have to have their own story. Just wait until you meet Wren.
Did you do research for your series? If so, how much research do you do?
-I do research for each series. For the Firehouse Six series I actually know firemen in my area so I spent a lot of time interviewing and getting to know them. Not just their jobs but the kind of men that they are beneath those sexy bunker pants.
Do you work to an outline or plot (a “Plotter”), or do you prefer just see where an idea takes you (a “Panster”)?
-I generally plot out the barebones of my story lines, but I admit that sometimes I wander off track. When I’m working out a scene and getting to know my characters I, at times, realize that changes have to be made. Changes that mesh with a character’s personality and how they go from point A to point B.
On average, how long does it take you to write a book in general, and Fused by Fire, in specific?
-It can take me anywhere between three weeks to two months to write a first draft. Granted, that does not include all the editing. It took me about a month to write the first draft of Fused by Fire.
Do you ever get the dreaded Writer’s Block? If so, how did you get through it?
-I do get Writer’s Block. However, I’m generally working on multiple books at the same time, so when one muse is slacking off, I just go work on another story.
Do you let the book stew – leave it for a month and then come back to it to edit?
-I let ideas stew, but generally when I start a book, not a day goes by that I don’t at least poke at it.
I’ve been seeing a lot of people doing “trailer’s” for books. What do you think of them?
-My book, Covert Delivery from the Eostre’s Baskets collection through Loose Id, was part of a book trailer. I find the idea of them fun and unique. They definitely have the potential to draw people in and perhaps wet their appetite for more.
What random fact about yourself that no one knows about?
-Up until my early teens I lived in a small town in Eastern Oregon. What does that mean? It means I can ride horses, rope cattle, and I love sleeping under the stars.
As a not-yet-published writer myself, what advice would you give to aspiring writers?
-Don’t let other people tell you that writing can only be “just a hobby”. Try to write every day, even if it is only a couple of sentences that don’t go in a book.
And that concludes our interview with Draven St. James! Thank you Draven for the lovely interview.
Be sure to be on the look out for the release of Fused by Fire. I know I will. I love firefighters in stories myself so I’ve added it to my Goodreads.com To Be Read (TBR) list. 🙂 Links for the series at the publisher and Goodreads along with the link to the book’s Goodreads profile are below the book’s blurb.
Fused by Fire Blurb (Firehouse Six 3)
Michael prides himself on being the man that everyone can depend on until one of his firefighters is severely wounded on the job. Will he be allowed to process the situation alone? Not when a loud and persistent Simon Winters shows up on his doorstep. The man hasn’t met a boundary he didn’t skip across.
Simon has had the biggest crush on Lieutenant Firefighter, Michael Donovan since the first day he saw him. Which just happened to be at an interview for a job to work as a firefighter. Before his desire to lick the gruff older man from head to toe affects his work, Simon transfers over to being a paramedic. Just when he’s begun to build a life that doesn’t include hot shower fantasies of Michael, the object of his angst is thrust into his path.
All too quickly, Simon begins to barrel through Michael’s defenses and dig up the desires Michael has fought so hard to hide. As passions flare out of control, tragedies collide from every side. Michael’s struggle to keep Simon at a distance starts to crumble beneath the weight of the secrets that Simon is hiding. Will Michael be able to protect Simon when he needs it the most or will he lose Simon forever?
Release Date: 5/20/2014
Simon knocked on his door. “Hey, all done out here. Want to come check my skills? We can play sexy maid and naughty boss.”
Michael bit back a groan, shocked by the words. He’d really love to do that. Did the man know how much his offer tortured him? When did Simon become an overt flirt?
With a fortifying breath, he opened the door and stopped short. Simon stood directly in front of him with a mischievous smile on his face.
“I found something.” Simon nibbled on his lush bottom lip.
Michael racked his brain for what Simon might have discovered that would warrant such a teasing expression.
Simon’s lips curved into a huge grin as he produced a half-empty bottle of lube from behind his back.
“Shit,” Michael muttered.
“Yeah, I was vacuuming out the couch cushions, and imagine my surprise.” Simon arched a brow. “Did you buy this at a wholesale supermarket?”
Michael’s face heated. Not because Simon had his lube, but because the last couple of times he’d used it, images of Simon in the firehouse showers had slipped unbidden into his thoughts.
He reached out to grab it, but Simon held it away from him.
“Tsk-tsk. Now, where do you hide your…material?” Simon brushed past Michael and into the bedroom.
Michael watched from the doorway as Simon rummaged through the drawers on both nightstands before coming away with a strip of condoms.
“Oh.” Simon’s face fell. He glanced from the bed to Michael, and his face reddened. With a loudly exhaled breath, he moved past Michael and walked back out into the living room. Michael followed along, only to be brought up short when Simon turned to dangle the condoms in front of Michael. “I guess you don’t need any additional inspiration.”
Michael finally managed to shake himself out of his frozen state. He snatched the condoms and lube away and tossed them on the couch. Simon just kept pushing and pushing, burrowing his way into all the crevices of Michael’s life.
Michael stepped forward and grabbed Simon by his shoulders. “Why are you really here?” he snarled.
“Because you’ve locked yourself away?” Simon whispered and gazed at him with eyes filled with concern.
That look stabbed into Michael. “And you care why?”
“Because…” Simon shrugged, dislodging Michael’s hold, and then cupped Michael’s face with a trembling hand. “What happened wasn’t your fault, and you needed someone to come and shove that truth into your face.”
“You picked the short straw?” Michael hated that Simon’s hand on his cheek brought him more comfort than anything else had. Just like at the hospital.
Simon shook his head, and his gaze fell to Michael’s lips. His hand came down to brush against the edge of Michael’s bottom lip. A pink flush rose along Simon’s cheeks.
Michael felt that innocent touch like a jolt through his body. He tilted Simon’s face up, and the sensual invitation in his eyes shocked and inflamed him.
He didn’t have the energy to fight against what he wanted, and right now that was Simon. With a groan of defeat, he smashed his lips to Simon’s and took the sweet oblivion that Simon offered. Simon melted into him, and a shudder worked its way through Michael’s body. Michael grasped the backs of Simon’s thighs and jerked until Simon jumped up and wrapped his legs around Michael’s waist.
Brief astonishment that they were really kissing filtered through Michael’s head as he stumbled back to sit on the couch. He traced his tongue along Simon’s bottom lip and thrust inside.
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